When listening to Josh Turner’s second album you can hear the range of different sounds from slow tempo and deep baritone to quick pace two stepping music. You can also hear traditional country music instruments like the fiddle, banjo, and acoustic guitar. While Turner’s album displays a variety of sounds, the one thing that holds constant throughout Your Man is his easily recognizable, rich, baritone voice.
Josh Turner was born Joshua Otis Turner on November 20, 1977 in Hannah, South Carolina. As a child, Turner grew up listening to “his grandmother’s Stanley Brothers and Osborne Brothers’ records,” as well as classics such as Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, and Don Williams (Cackett). Because Turner was raised listening to these artists, as he began to produce and play his own music he wanted to have the classic sound of his musical heroes while also having his own unique sound. He sang his first country song in front of a crowd when he was only thirteen years old. After this performance, Turner said it “created a feeling in [him] that [he] had never felt before. [He] knew from that moment that [he] wanted to be a country singer” (GAC).
Josh Turner’s second album titled Your Man was released on January 24th 2006, three years after his debut album Long Black Train was released. With the success of his first album and his first single in 2003, both titled “Long Black Train,” Josh Turner felt that in 2006 it was time to release a new album. Because his first album was a success, his initial thought was that he would try and essentially recreate it in his second album but with different songs. Josh Turner placed a huge deal of unnecessary stress on himself because he wanted this next album to be just as successful as the last, but he also wanted to exceed what the previous album had done. However after much contemplating, Turner soon realized that this strategy might be a difficult task which would lead to much struggling, so he decided that he would take an entirely different route when composing his second album. After Turner let go of the idea of reproducing his first album, he was then able to relax and go on to write five of the songs that went on to appear on the Your Man album. In contrast to the more serious nature of “Long Black Train,” Turner decided to incorporate a lighter tone by including more comical sounding songs as well as tributes to other artists. But that is not to say that this album did not also consist of the more traditional country love songs featuring Turner’s baritone voice.
In composing his second album, Turner incorporated love songs and spiritual songs as well as songs that paid tribute to some of his musical heroes. Turner states that he is not extremely religious, but he is a Christian and a man of God (Cackett). Although he claims that he is not overly religious, Turner believes that god is our almighty father and he still thanks god for blessing him and allowing him to get to where he is today. His faith plays a big role in his life and he wants people to know that, which is why he includes songs such as “Me and God” to demonstrate his belief that as long as he has God by his side then almost anything is possible. This acknowledgement by Turner that he is, in fact, a Christian man allows him to be more appealing to his target audience seeing that religion is often considered to be a country music trope. Turner’s willingness to be open and proud of the fact that he is a man of God also gives him a more personable, humble image.
Despite being a young, new country artist Josh Turner has an old soul. He says that he grew up listening to classics like Don Williams and Johnny Cash and when he sings, it is his goal to capture the sounds of classic country music. When deciding what types of sounds he would like to incorporate into his albums, Turner is well aware of the fact that one of his goals as a county music artist is for him to stay true to his roots.
Songs on the album such as “Loretta Lynn’s Lincoln” and “Heaven Have Mercy on a Country Boy” are the songs that capture Turner’s admiration for artists that came before him. “Loretta Lynn’s Lincoln,” is one of the songs on this album that carries a lighter humorous tone while simultaneously speaking about one of his musical idols. His collaborations with artists such as Bluegrass legend Ralph Stanley and country music legend John Anderson on this album demonstrates his appreciation for artists that have come before him and essentially paved the way for today’s music industry.
All in all, Turner’s second album is a meaningful addition to Long Black Train in which both albums give his fans a window into his life by discussing his belief in god and religion, his desire to stay true to his roots, and even showing a bit of his goofy side.
- Would You Go With Me (S. Camp, J. Sherrill)
- Baby’s Gone Home to Momma (S. Camp, H. McCullough)
- No Rush (S. Camp, B. Long, B. Burnette)
- Your Man (J. Everett, C. DuBois, C. Stapleton)
- Loretta Lynn’s Lincoln (S. Camp, M. Sanders)
- White Noise (feat. John Anderson) (J. Turner, J. Anderson)
- Angels Fall Sometimes (J. Turner, M. Nesler, T. Martin)
- Heaven Have Mercy on a Country Boy (B. McDill)
- Me and God (Feat. Ralph Stanley) (J. Turner)
- Gravity (J. Turner, M. Narmore)
- Way Down South (J. Turner)
- Cackett, Alan. “Josh Turner: An Old Soul.” Maverick 1 Apr. 2010: 48-52. Print.
- “Artists: Josh Turner: Josh Turner Biography: Great American Country.” Great American Country: Artists. Web. 7 Mar. 2015. <http://www.gactv.com/gac/ar_az_josh_turner/article/0,3097,GAC_27010_4736023_02,00.html>.
- “Your Man.” Josh Turner. Web. 8 Mar. 2015. <http://joshturner.com/music/your-man>.